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Distract

A frustrating 20-minute conversation with Microsoft’s new chatbot Zo

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I'm a tech journalist and editor with lots of opinions. 10second.tech is a place for me to put those. All views expressed are personal, and not those of any titles for which I write in other capacities. As well as running this site, I also write for WIRED, Engadget, Trusted Reviews, and a number of other leading technology titles. I also run SexTechGuide.com.You're welcome to contact me via [email protected] if you have news or anything else to pass along, on twitter at @10sectech or @TheNextWoodsTech startup founders that need media advice or PRs and brands that need content strategy advice should visit benwoodsish.com.

Distract

Artists create surrogate SMS hotline to stop you sending those angry messages

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You know the feeling, right? That one where you’re apoplectic with rage and barely restraining yourself from sending that highly-charged, emotional, and frequently inadvisable SMS? Of course you do.

Now, however, rather than torpedoing your career or long-standing friendships, you can text your irate and emotional messages to ‘When I Think About You I Text Myself‘ on 323.498.2368, if you’re in the US. Presumably, adding the international dialling code to that will work for anyone else.

The project is a collaboration between artists Hanny Ahern and Adam Rohksar, and technologist Chris Allick. For the initial project phase, the responses that will be sent out are written by the two artists.

“The message-in-a-bottle approach is an opportunity for an emotional release without concern for social repercussion. It allows the contributor to soothe their impulse, and use texting as a mode of poetic expression to find voice and grace. When I Think About You I Text Myself allows the artist to play the role of intermediary, as if to say, “I’ll receive you until you’re ready to receive yourself,” the trio wrote.

After that, people who sent messages will receive them back at three, six, nine and 12 month intervals, which is why it’s focused on receiving genuine and emotional messages, rather than ‘4got to buy milk’.

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Distract

5 creepy buildings that had foundations in tech

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The expression ‘technology marches on’ has a flip-side that is rarely considered: as it does so, it leaves hulking shadowy ruins and architectural testaments to long-abandoned technologies in its wake.

Other buildings, like Steve Jobs’ abandoned Jackling Mansion or the shed that HP started in, have a history of their own; notable notches in the in the timeline of tech.

The buildings in this list, however, are just downright creepy one way or another.

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Distract

If you drill a hole in your new iPhone 7 looking for a headphone jack then you’re a moron

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Look, sometimes you just have to call something how it is, and in this instance, drilling a hole in the bottom of your iPhone 7 because you saw a YouTube video telling you it would reveal a secret headphone jack makes you at least ‘pretty silly indeed’ if not a full-blown ‘moron’.

Sure, there could be loads of reasons someone believed the video – on a channel dedicated to DESTROYING TECHNOLOGY. Or perhaps all the people claiming to have tried it themselves after watching the videos are false.

You never really know on the Web, and that’s a lesson that anyone who has genuinely drilled a hole in their iPhone 7 just learned the hard way. But, you should know with something like this.

You really should.

Or maybe, just maybe, if the headphone socket was that important to you, buying an iPhone 7 was a dumb move.

Either way, there’s no sympathy here.

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OnePlus

OnePlus 5T Review, Summary and Guide

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Five months after the initial introduction of the OnePlus 5, the Chinese company moved on to greater things; literally.

The new OnePlus 5T is regarded as a cost-effective rival to some of the most powerful smartphones on sale today, in fierce contention with the likes of iPhone 8, LG V30, and Samsung Galaxy ranges. But how does it stack up?

OnePlus 5T Review: Design

The OnePlus 5T is 156.1mm tall and 75mm wide and 7.3mm thick.

The sleek metal unibody makes it aesthetically pleasing, and it got a modest makeover with smaller bezels, and a gently-curving rear.

Even though the OnePlus 5T is neither dust nor water resistant, the 2.5D Gorilla Glass, anodized aluminum, and ceramic coating are basic protective measures.

Lastly, it weighs 163g, making it fit the description of big, bold, and beautiful. The OnePlus 5T colors are Lava Red, Sandstone White, and Midnight Black.

OnePlus 5T Review: Display

This is perhaps, the single biggest improvement on this device. The OnePlus 5T boasts a 6.01-inch full HD (18:9) AMOLED panel, making it one of the few handsets available with a screen larger than 6-inches.

One disappointing feature, however, is its full HD resolution; a mere 2,160 x 1,080 with a 401ppi pixel density. For the price, sacrifices have to be made, and this is obviously one of them for the 5T. It’s not ‘bad’ as a screen though.

Display Modes:

  • Adaptive mode
  • Reading Mode
  • Night Mode
  • Lift Up Display
  • Ambient Display

Software

Equipped with OxygenOS 4.7 and Android 7.1.1 (Nougat), the OnePlus 5T is upgradable to Android 8.0 and Oxygen OS 5.0.3.

Face Unlock uses a plain 2D recognition feature, which makes it faster and easier to use for unlocking the phone, however, it is unfit for any other authentication outside the lock screen – so you won’t be able to use it for payments, for example.

Its chipset is the Qualcomm MSM8998 Snapdragon 835 and the OnePlus 5T has an Octa-Core (4 x 2.45 GHz Kryo & 4 x 1.9 GHz Kryo) processor. It offers 6GB/8GB of RAM and 64/128GB storage, depending on where you are in the world.

There is no external memory slot available, however.

OnePlus 5T retains the 3.5mm headphone jack and the company announced that it will continue to support this connector until USB-C headphones garner enough momentum to making the switch painless. There is also an active noise-cancelling microphone to make audio quality clearer on calls.

Related Accessories

OnePlus 5T Review: Camera

The OnePlus 5T is home to dual cameras; the primary 16-megapixel and the secondary 20-megapixel. OnePlus employs what it calls ‘Intelligent Pixel Technology’, which is useful in brightening dark scenes without causing a distortion.

The camera features a pro mode, panorama mode, time-lapse, slow-motion video mode and a rear fingerprint sensor that can be long-pressed to take photos with either camera.

It also comes with a face unlock interface which allows you seamlessly unlock your phone. On the other hand, the removal of the telephoto lens makes an optical zoom impossible and the front camera lacks a portrait mode.

The face unlock is not as reliable as that of the Samsung S8, however.

OnePlus 5T Review: Battery

Like its predecessor, the OnePlus 5T comes with a 3,300 mAh battery.

Tests reveal that the life-span under heavy usage is 11 hours, 22 minutes, however, some users find that they get a lot less than that under any conditions.

On paper, it’s about on par with the Samsung Note 8 and Google Pixel 2, as long as you don’t suffer the same problems as some of those other users linked above.

OnePlus 5T Review: Pricing & Availability

The OnePlus 5T is available in almost every country in the world.

The phone price ranges from $450-$600 depending on the specifications you choose, and it’s available directly from OnePlus, third-party retailers or on contract deals – again, depending on what country you’re in.

OnePlus 5T Review: Rating

Distract

Artists create surrogate SMS hotline to stop you sending those angry messages

Published

on

You know the feeling, right? That one where you’re apoplectic with rage and barely restraining yourself from sending that highly-charged, emotional, and frequently inadvisable SMS? Of course you do.

Now, however, rather than torpedoing your career or long-standing friendships, you can text your irate and emotional messages to ‘When I Think About You I Text Myself‘ on 323.498.2368, if you’re in the US. Presumably, adding the international dialling code to that will work for anyone else.

The project is a collaboration between artists Hanny Ahern and Adam Rohksar, and technologist Chris Allick. For the initial project phase, the responses that will be sent out are written by the two artists.

“The message-in-a-bottle approach is an opportunity for an emotional release without concern for social repercussion. It allows the contributor to soothe their impulse, and use texting as a mode of poetic expression to find voice and grace. When I Think About You I Text Myself allows the artist to play the role of intermediary, as if to say, “I’ll receive you until you’re ready to receive yourself,” the trio wrote.

After that, people who sent messages will receive them back at three, six, nine and 12 month intervals, which is why it’s focused on receiving genuine and emotional messages, rather than ‘4got to buy milk’.

Continue Reading

Distract

5 creepy buildings that had foundations in tech

Published

on

The expression ‘technology marches on’ has a flip-side that is rarely considered: as it does so, it leaves hulking shadowy ruins and architectural testaments to long-abandoned technologies in its wake.

Other buildings, like Steve Jobs’ abandoned Jackling Mansion or the shed that HP started in, have a history of their own; notable notches in the in the timeline of tech.

The buildings in this list, however, are just downright creepy one way or another.

Continue Reading

Distract

If you drill a hole in your new iPhone 7 looking for a headphone jack then you’re a moron

Published

on

Look, sometimes you just have to call something how it is, and in this instance, drilling a hole in the bottom of your iPhone 7 because you saw a YouTube video telling you it would reveal a secret headphone jack makes you at least ‘pretty silly indeed’ if not a full-blown ‘moron’.

Sure, there could be loads of reasons someone believed the video – on a channel dedicated to DESTROYING TECHNOLOGY. Or perhaps all the people claiming to have tried it themselves after watching the videos are false.

You never really know on the Web, and that’s a lesson that anyone who has genuinely drilled a hole in their iPhone 7 just learned the hard way. But, you should know with something like this.

You really should.

Or maybe, just maybe, if the headphone socket was that important to you, buying an iPhone 7 was a dumb move.

Either way, there’s no sympathy here.

Continue Reading

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